Pets and Fire Safety
We read about it all too often . . . a pet starts a fire when the owners are away and doesn’t survive. Material things can be replaced, but not our pets. They are part of our families.
The statistics are staggering. According to the National Fire Protection Association, “only 75% of home smoke detectors are working. In 2016, a residential fire occurred every 82 seconds, resulting in 3,390 civilian deaths, 14,650 civilian injuries, and 10.6 billion dollars in property damage. Household pets are responsible for over 1,000 house fires each year in the United States.” The United States Fire Administration estimated 500,000 pets are affected annually by fires.
Pets can chew electrical wires, accidentally turn on the gas stove, and knock over candles and gas or space heaters. Small pets can work themselves into tight spaces near electrical outlets, and tall breed dogs can reach the top of the stove. As a pet parent, you should evaluate your risks room by room.
• Find a way to secure exposed computer cables and electrical cords so your pet cannot access them. You can buy pet-specific cord covers. • Test smoke alarms to be they are actually working and replace them at least every 10 years. • Blow out and cool down all candles using a candle snuffer or, if the candle is in a glass jar, use the cap. Flameless candles are the safest. • Turn off all gas and electric appliances before leaving home. Remove stove knobs. • Use a fire protector screen for fireplaces so pets can’t get too close. • Crate pets for short periods of time. • Have a licensed electrician replace old wiring or wiring that is not up to code. • Restrict pets to a “safe area” when you’re not home. • Develop and practice a fire escape safety plan that that includes your pets. • Collar and tag pets in the event they escape. • Consider replacing your slow- reacting ionization smoke detectors with a much faster-acting photoelectric smoke detector that connects to 24/7 live monitoring and fire dispatch that could save your pets.
Make sure you have a Pet Fire Sticker on the outside of each door to your home and list how many and what type of pets you have. This will alert firefighters that you have pets inside.
About Smoke Alarm Monitoring
Smoke Alarm Monitoring specializes in a patented, photoelectric cellular smoke detector with live 24/7 monitoring. SAM’s goal is to alert the public to pet smoke and fire risks and help save the lives of unattended pets. SAM offers fundraising partnerships with pet rescues, shelters, and not-for-profit organizations. Homeowner’s insurance discounts often cover the cost of monitoring.
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